By Alexander Lopez

NPA FIREARMS. Jerome Amparo Marapao, an NPA medic of Platoon 2, Sub-Regional Sentro De Grabidad Sagay in Agusan del Norte led government troops on Thursday (Feb. 1, 2024) in the recovery of a cache of firearms hidden by the rebels in Barangay Sangay, Buenavista town. The armed encounters in Agusan del Norte last month also resulted in the death of four rebels, the capture of three, and the recovery of 14 high-powered firearms. (Photo courtesy of 402Bde)

BUTUAN CITY – The communist New People’s Army (NPA) suffered a major blow during the three armed confrontations last month in Agusan del Norte, the Army’s 402nd Infantry Brigade (402Bde) said Friday.

In a statement, Brig. Gen. Adonis Ariel Orio, the 402Bde commander, said the series of encounters between the Army’s 23rd Infantry Battalion (23IB) and the Platoon 2, Sub-Regional Sentro De Grabidad Sagay (SRSDG Sagay) under the NPA North Central Mindanao Regional Committee last month had resulted to the death of four rebels, capture of three, and the surrender of three others.

The encounters took place on January 16, 24, and 29 where 14 high-powered firearms and ammunition of the rebels were also recovered by the 23IB, seven of which were seized in the encounter sites.

On Thursday, Orio said a rebel, identified as Jerome Amparo, also turned himself in at the 23IB headquarters.

Upon his surrender, Marapao a medic of SRSDG Sagay, revealed the location of firearms hidden by the NPA rebels in Sitio Malambago, Barangay Sangay, Buenavista, Agusan del Norte.

A follow-up operation led to the recovery of six AK-47 rifles, a cal.45 pistol, ammunition, and other war materials at the site.

“Many NPA members are now following the call for a long-lasting and genuine peace that further weakens their organization,” Orio said. (PNA)